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Portfolio Expansion with Lane Kawaoka

Portfolio Expansion with Lane Kawaoka
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Dave Debeau [00:00:08] Hey, everyone, this is Dave Debeau with another episode of the Property Profits Real Estate podcast. Today, we've got a gentleman joining us all the way from the sunny shores of Hawaii Lane. How are you doing today?

Lane Kawaoka [00:00:22] I had an awesome Day. Thanks for having me.

Dave Debeau [00:00:25] My pleasure. So Lane is an experienced real estate entrepreneur. You wouldn't know it from looking at him because he looks like such a young guy, but he's been on the real estate game for a good chunk of time, started off with I think you got your first property just out of university or while you're still in university.

Lane Kawaoka [00:00:44] Yeah, it took me a couple of years to save up the down payment, but yeah, especially

Dave Debeau [00:00:48] in Seattle,

Lane Kawaoka [00:00:49] I would imagine, actually, 10 years ago to the day.

Dave Debeau [00:00:52] Almost nice. Nice. And you started off doing single family homes and then you've worked up into much, much bigger deals since then. So looking forward to learning from you from your journey with real estate investing.

Lane Kawaoka [00:01:07] Yeah. Thanks for having me.

Dave Debeau [00:01:08] Yeah. So why don't you tell us a little bit about how you got started in real estate in the first place?

Lane Kawaoka [00:01:14] Yes, I went to school to be an engineer, but was raised on that linear path and go to school, get a good job and work at that job for 40 years. But if anyone's been a civil engineer before, you know that your first job isn't very glamorous. You go out and you manage crews out in the field. But I was I saved enough money for a couple of years. He didn't just ramen noodles all day long, figuratively, just to save my money and bought a property. But I was never home, so I just rented it out. And I lived in corporate lodging for a few years, just saving all my money. And then I realized that was a primary residence to live in for my rents there from my tenants were twenty two hundred and my mortgage was six hundred. And to a young 20 year old kid, that was a lot of beer money. And I realized, like, if I just repeated this, I would be out of the rat race. So that was kind of my start in this whole thing.

Dave Debeau [00:02:10] Well, that's that is very, very cool. So you also started with single family homes, and since then you've moved into other things and reading your bio, you're into all sorts of different things now, so. What are you focusing on primarily these days? What do you invest in primarily?

Lane Kawaoka [00:02:28] Yes, I, I kind of acquire the next few years. I got up to 11 single family home rentals, did a lot of those term rentals just so kind of help people get started with today. But then I realize they're not very scalable. 11 rentals. You're going to have only three thousand dollars per month, which is great, but it's not going to allow you to quit your job. So I started to learn more about multifamily apartments. Then I discovered syndications. And then since then, I've been selling off my single family homes and transferring it into apartment buildings are now mobile home parks, assisted living deals, different asset classes with different operators all over the country.

Dave Debeau [00:03:09] Very, very cool. So are you more are you more of the mover and shaker guy named you joint venture with other people that are the more of the managers on your deals, or are you doing these deals from scratch?

Lane Kawaoka [00:03:22] Yeah, I mean, initially I was just the LP because I didn't know much. I knew it academically. I think a lot of people know this stuff academic with so much podcasts out there. But I just jumped on to kind of get in the group. And then after a while I got invited to be in general partnerships and they got to see what it was like inside the curtain. And yeah. And that's I just kind of use my LP money and go into multiple, multiple deals. And for me, I'm trying to build up a little syndication ladder, which is the CD Ladder 2.0, I call it, where you're in all these deals and they're all cash flowing, which is great. But you're you're kind of waiting for them to get that first appreciation of finance or the sale event to double it. It's even more deals and more cash flow.

Dave Debeau [00:04:11] Nice, nice, nice, nice. So everything's twenty, twenty hindsight lane. So knowing what you know now, if you're going back to your Román needing twenty year old self, what, if anything, would you do differently.

Lane Kawaoka [00:04:27] Yeah, I mean I just quit my job six months ago and I was always wondering why I was doing that in the first place. But in hindsight that was the best thing for me. To my highest and best use was to work at my day job to make one hundred a year salary, to save that money, to put into down payments on passive investments. In the beginning, it was just straight single family homes or turnkey rentals. But then I parlay that into larger syndications. That's a higher net worth investor.

Dave Debeau [00:04:57] All right. So you're getting involved in syndications. Are you starting to create your own syndications and and bring investors on board yourself these days?

Lane Kawaoka [00:05:05] Yeah. So, I mean, a lot of people, they kind of they know they have like a pretty good track record and going to almost a couple of dozen deals. Now, I've kind of seen a bunch. So a lot of people, they just like to follow me, which is fine for me. I don't have to trust them at all. They sort of just have to trust me. But yeah, people follow me into deals and sort of just like how people in the stock market do the well watching tactic, they just follow what the big guys are doing. And that allows me to get access to more and more deals. And for me to hit a critical mass where people are sending me deals because they know people follow me into them. So it's all the responsibility. I've got to go do my due diligence, run the numbers myself. I put the panels in the right roles, put into my analyzer first, and then I get to know the people because people's half of it.

Dave Debeau [00:05:53] Yeah, definitely. For sure. So listen, I know just from taking a look at what you're up to before we jumped on the interview that you're you're very, very proactive when it comes to your online presence and writing books and hosting podcasts and YouTube channels and all that kind of good stuff. What do you think is the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to position yourself as a real estate expert?

Lane Kawaoka [00:06:21] Just being different? Don't be another Waldor and being authentic is the keyword, right? I mean, the example I always like to use is people have watched the Marvel Avengers, right. To Thor, for example, the character. Nobody really liked them the first two two of his movies, but he didn't really start to catch on until he started to be a little bit more comical, a little more authentic, vulnerable. And then fat Thor came around and now people start to love them. And he's the only character is going to get his third and fourth movie. I think it goes to show that real estate is used to be a bunch of people in white backdrops, blue shirts, brown shoes and navy pets. Right. People don't want that today, especially some of the younger folks. They want authenticity. They want to see some mistakes. I mean, I went into deals, my first passive investment. I lost like 30, 40 grand because I invested with a shyster. But lesson learned and people want to see that stuff.

Dave Debeau [00:07:23] Yeah, yeah, I'm being open about that's this huge rivalry because I agree with you, so many people position themselves as gurus and they know it all and they never make a single mistake. But if you're everybody knows that's B.S. So if you just open about it and you share about it and I have a saying, a smart person learns from their own mistakes. A wise person learns from the mistakes of others. So it's always a good idea to encourage people to be wise. That's for sure. So speaking of mistakes, what are some of the big ones you see people making when it comes to real estate investing, especially beginners?

Lane Kawaoka [00:07:59] Yeah, I mean, real estate investing kind of runs the gamut, right? Like you got wholesaler's, you got flippers, you got accredited investors investing passively in multiple syndications. I think the biggest thing is self-awareness, realizing where you fall in terms of time, money and knowledge. The first questions I usually ask people when they kind of book a call with me is how much time and how much money you have. If you're broke, you can't be a pass investor. You know, this is real estate investing. You need money to invest. You need to go make money, not do some wholesaling deals or whatever, or go for a lot of my guys. They're like dentists, doctors, engineers, lawyers. It just makes more sense for them to go get a promotion at their job or do an extra surgery in the weekend. That's their highest and best. Use them to kind of screw around with a burst strategy type of deal. So I think I see a lot of misalignment with people's attributes and what they should be doing.

Dave Debeau [00:08:58] Yeah, makes sense. So you come from an engineering background. So I imagine most engineers I know are pretty analytical one. My question is, what do you what would you consider to be your unfair advantage or your kind of real estate investing superpipe?

Lane Kawaoka [00:09:15] I would say like, yeah, I guess I'm pretty analytical and strategic, but I think people who kind of take it to the next level have bipolar attributes. People tell me they like to talk to me because I tell it to them straight and try and find another engineer that can actually talk to people. Right. That's a very unique skill.

Dave Debeau [00:09:38] And accountants as well.

Lane Kawaoka [00:09:39] Right. I mean, Dirk Lovinsky was like a seven foot center, but he could shoot threes, right? That's huge. That was why he was so great. LeBron James is like six foot nine. You can dunk, but he's faster than most point guards. I think those are the people that take it to the next level, but they're sort of exceptions to the rule. Not everybody has two skill sets that are contrasting like that, that are unique. Most people have one. So, again, it comes down to self-awareness. If you only have one, where is your highest and best use?

Dave Debeau [00:10:12] Excellent. Very good. So you're kind of getting into bigger deals these days when you're working with clients. I know you do coaching and training and whatnot. What do you usually start beginner investors off with? Usually getting people going with, like mom and pop investors to go with a single family. Olmer really depends on where they're coming from.

Lane Kawaoka [00:10:33] Well, I mean, I'm not big on the coaching thing. I'm kind of been the anti spend 20, 40 grand on a program. I want these guys to consume all the free podcasts I have. Right. And I want you to maybe even own a property or to not come in code. But what I want to do with these guys is like, hey, if you want to take it to the next level and you're more of a passive investor, but you want to get more sophisticated and not waste your time, that's where I am. The help.

Dave Debeau [00:11:02] Very good. So, Lane, if people want to find out more about who you are and what you do you have any recommendations for them or can they go?

Lane Kawaoka [00:11:11] Yeah, I mean, check me out. So pass the cash flow dotcom as my URL. My podcast is on all of the famous podcasting channels, iTunes, Google Play, a simple pass, passive cowsills what it's called. Yeah. If you're if you're interested in like turnkey rentals. My first 20 podcasts are all about turnkey rentals, giving applying your first rentals. But since then the the tune has changed these past few years to more syndications and more accredited investor type of investments.

Dave Debeau [00:11:39] Very good. And as we're wrapping things up here, then what what would be one actionable piece of advice that you could give someone who's listening this, let's say, somebody who's relatively new to real estate investing? What would you tell them they should do?

Lane Kawaoka [00:11:55] First, I would say, like do do what everybody else does and at least consume one hundred hours of podcasts first. Right. Get yourself to a certain level and then go network with other people that make sure you add value to other people. Know, I think one mistake I see a lot of people are they become assholes, ask holes. They just go up to like, Hey Dave, I'll do this. I'm going to do that to me. I'll do this. Right. That really gets you nowhere. That might get you a few answers. But it's the voters is in the relationships and social capital is probably one of the biggest leveraged assets you can create, especially starting out. I mean, there's there's a reason why they say real estate's all about people and your network is your net worth.

Dave Debeau [00:12:38] Eventually, yeah, I see a lot of people making that mistake as well, so what would be your recommendation instead of just going up to somebody and saying, hey, how do you do this? This is this what would you suggest that relatively newbie investor who thinks they've got nothing to bring to the table, what could they do for a more experienced person?

Lane Kawaoka [00:12:58] Yeah, I mean, first of all, like pick your targets. Like, I wouldn't go up to you, Dave, and just start trying to find ways to add value to you. I would kind of work your work your way up the food chain, essentially find out what that person just a few steps above you need. Maybe you have to ask them that. In fact, ask them that. Right. What's in it for them? Why would they would they want to help you and then try and do that for them? I think another big mistake is like people will say, hey, Dave, tell me how I can help you. You know, I mean, I'm not with you on your day, but like, I'm imagining you're just too busy to think of stuff for other people to do for you. Right.

Dave Debeau [00:13:36] Like, yeah, it's a real pain in the butt, actually, when that does happen, it's like,

Lane Kawaoka [00:13:41] yeah, yeah. And you're like, all right, file away. Archive never see again. And a lot of times these guys, they'll either give up and never get started because they don't get that extra push. So my recommendation is go ask or figure out what it is and give freely without any quid pro quo kind of assumption that you're going to get something in return, go out and do it and do it for multiple people and you'll find that a good majority of them will likely reciprocate. And then at that point, you know, you have the data to know who you want to interact with in the future. Those people who reciprocate their cool, you know, continue to nurture those relationships.

Dave Debeau [00:14:20] Yeah, that's very, very good advice. In fact, I gave some similar advice to a gentleman not that long ago. He wanted to get into doing burs. But he had no experience with it. I said, OK, you know, these guys, they're doing it so well. Yeah, I told them, hey, I said, if you ever need a hand, let me know. Well, of course, they're never going to let them know. Because it's the same thing you just talked about, right, it's like, how are we going to put this guy to work? I said, show up, find out where they're working, show up with your hard hat, your work gloves, big jug of coffee and a bunch of donuts and get to work or doing whatever they need you to do, all in our garbage, tearing down walls, whatever the hell it is they need help with. Just go in, roll up your sleeves and do it. And he did to his credit. And they love him. They love him dearly for it. So, yeah,

Lane Kawaoka [00:15:09] I mean, for me, all I ask is, hey, if you've got enough money to buy your first property and you're willing to listen to my first 20 podcasts about actually buying a turnkey rental, I'll get on a phone call with you. Shameen email financeable pass a Cashel. If you're willing to put at least that much effort into it. I can put in 10 to 15 minutes of time.

Dave Debeau [00:15:30] Makes sense. Makes sense. Then there's been a lot of fun. Nice to meet you. Thank you very much for being on the podcast. Yeah. Thanks for having me, Dave. My pleasure. All right, everybody, take care and we'll see you on the next episode. Bye bye. Well, thanks very much for checking out the property profits podcast and you like what we're doing here. Please head on over to iTunes, subscribe read us and leave us to review it. Very, very much appreciated. And if you're looking to create a regular flow of inbound investor inquiries about your real estate deals, then I invite you to attend one of my upcoming live online demonstrations. And you can check that out at Investor Attraction Demo Dotcom Ticker.

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